Trump Visits Saudi Arabia
President Trump made a splashy debut on the world stage here Saturday, ushering in a new era in U.S.-Saudi Arabian relations by signing a joint “strategic vision” that includes $110 billion in American arms sales and other new investments that the administration said would bring hundreds of thousands of jobs.
“It was a great day,” Trump said. He cited “tremendous investments in the United States...and jobs, jobs, jobs.”1
Selling weapons to Saudi Arabia to create Western jobs is no different from selling weapons to ISIS to create Western jobs. Both Saudi elites and ISIS exploit Islam to murder innocent people and carry out gross human rights violations. In Saudi Arabia, women cannot drive and the male guardianship system means that a woman's life is controlled by a man from birth to death.2
In Saudi Arabia, a woman’s life is controlled by a man from birth until death. Every Saudi woman must have a male guardian, normally a father or husband, but in some cases a brother or even a son, who has the power to make a range of critical decisions on her behalf.
As dozens of Saudi women told Human Rights Watch, the male guardianship system is the most significant impediment to realizing women’s rights in the country, effectively rendering adult women legal minors who cannot make key decisions for themselves.3
Homosexuality is punishable by death in Saudi Arabia:
Saudi Arabia: Under the country’s interpretation of sharia law, a married man engaging in sodomy or any non-Muslim who commits sodomy with a Muslim can be stoned to death. All sex outside of marriage is illegal.4
Saudi Arabia's horrible military campaign against Yemen has left 10,000 dead, 40,000 wounded, and 10 million in need of urgent assistance as of January of this year. This campaign began March of 2015.5
Obama, who sold about $115 billion in U.S. weapons to Saudi Arabia during his eight years as president, had slowed military cooperation with the kingdom in large part because of what it considered Saudi Arabia’s indiscriminate bombing of civilians in Yemen. The Trump deal puts those agreements back on track and expands them.
"Saudi Arabia sponsors extremist Wahabi mosques and imams all over the world" which exploit Islam to carry out human rights violations.6
"Osama bin Laden was a Saudi citizen, as were 15 of the 19 9/11 hijackers." "The 9/11 hijackers were from Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Lebanon."7
The travel ban Trump wanted to put in place beginning January of this year would have affected citizens of Iraq, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen.
The list does not include Muslim-majority countries where the Trump Organization does business, including Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates. In financial disclosure forms during the presidential campaign, he listed two companies with dealings in Egypt and eight with business in Saudi Arabia. And in the UAE, the Trump Organization is partnering with a local billionaire to develop two golf courses in Dubai.
None of the countries the 9/11 hijackers came from were included in Trump's travel ban list.
- 1. Rucker, Philip and Karen DeYoung. "Trump signs ‘tremendous’ deals with Saudi Arabia on his first day overseas." The Washington Post, 20 May 2017, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-gets-elaborate-welcome-in-.... Accessed 21 May 2017.
- 2. Roberts, Rachel. "Saudi women in silent walking protest over right to drive in the Kingdom." The Independent, 5 Apr. 2017, http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/saudi-arabia-women-s.... Accessed 21 May 2017.
- 3. "Boxed In: Women and Saudi Arabia’s Male Guardianship System." Human Rights Watch, 16 Jul. 2016, https://www.hrw.org/report/2016/07/16/boxed/women-and-saudi-arabias-male.... Accessed 21 May 2017.
- 4. Bearak, Max and Darla Cameron. "Here are the 10 countries where homosexuality may be punished by death." The Washington Post, 16 Jun. 2016, https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2016/06/13/here-are-th.... Accessed 21 May 2017.
- 5. "Death toll in Yemen conflict passes 10,000". Al Jazeera, 16 Jan. 2017, http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/01/death-toll-yemen-conflict-passes-1.... Accessed 21 May 2017.
- 6. Applebaum, Anne. "Trump’s bizarre and un-American visit to Saudi Arabia." The Washington Post, 21 May 2017, https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/global-opinions/wp/2017/05/21/trumps.... Accessed 21 May 2017.
- 7. Blaine, Kyle and Julia Horowitz. "How the Trump administration chose the 7 countries in the immigration executive order." CNN, 30 Jan. 2017, http://www.cnn.com/2017/01/29/politics/how-the-trump-administration-chos.... Accessed 21 May 2017.